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VCA Drama: what are the known facts?

Discussion in 'General Viper Discussion' started by Free2go, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. Free2go

    Free2go Viper Owner

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    Could someone please tell me what the facts are concerning the current VCA regime collapse and why people are hating on Bob Pantax? As a new enlistee, I'm trying to read various threads and deduct what's going on but there appears to be a lot of subjectivity. Thanks.
     
  2. DrumrBoy

    DrumrBoy Enthusiast

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    X2. I haven't kept up with all the intrigue but have noticed long-term members being silenced ("whacked" and dumped in the east river?) and some of the other stuff but have no idea what the big picture or summary is.
     
  3. Rizzo

    Rizzo Viper Owner

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    To get the truth you will need to go to the Alley. Many long time members have been silenced but the truth is out there. Just go look for it. To be honest the VCA is s sinking ship with no life jackets. Its too far gone and any post that claims the truth is deleted. I'm sure this post will be gone right away just for mentioning this stuff. Its a sad day around here but not to worry there is another site in the works that will be better with none of the political BS that surrounds this place. I stopped being a paid member here a few years ago because of the blatant back yard politics that were going on. I was not going to support the crooks that were running the place.
     
  4. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    When people are angry, they say and write things that sometimes are a bit over the top. A brief 411 on what has transpired might be as follows. ( Just my opinion based on reading what is on these forums for many years and a number of conversations.) Quite a few years ago what I would call a feud started between Chris Marshall and JonB. Unfortunately, that feud started to seep into VCA matters and spread. Ralph, being the big hearted guy that he is, tried to end the feud and bring peace. Ralph's efforts were not well received by some and a couple of people, possibly more, wrote negative letters to Chrysler about Ralph. There were then various communications after that between Chrysler and VCA leaders. Some were meetings. After the last meeting, Chrysler sent out a letter saying that they wanted what they considered a conflict of interest between VCA and VPA eliminated. That conflict of interest was the fact that the Marshall family was involved in VPA and the VCA and they believed that being involved in both entities was not appropriate. The letter also wanted what it refered to as "peculiar behavior" to stop. I believe the peculiar behavior was the letter writing to Chrysler about Ralph and some hostile posts toward Chrysler and its employees made on this site. Unfortunately, durng the feud, a repressive moderating environment developed on this site that went beyond what moderators should have been doing which is mainly to eliminate cussing and personal attacks from threads and generally to reasonably enforce forum posting rules. The Chrysler letter was leaked to the public and all hell broke loose. It was, in effect, the straw that broke the dam and released all of the pent up anger and frustration that had been accumulating as a result of the repressive environment that had developed. That wave of anger culminated in the proposed formation of the VOC.

    I have tried to stay calm and reasonable during this time. I believed that Lee would resign and he did. ( I do not believe the Godfather I departure routine was appropriate and, if possible, should be reversed if lawful to do so. One of the new Board's first actions was to invite Maurice back to be the National VP since Maurice's removal was clearly not proper under the existing Bylaws.) The new Board is trying very hard to repair the damage and I believe that we all should help them and give them a chance. It is easy to post anger, abuse and hate. It is harder to come up with constructive ideas and be part of the solution. The above 411 is just my take on what has happened. There will undoubtedly be abusive posts in response to this post but that is expected.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2013
  5. QUICKSRT10/SRT8

    QUICKSRT10/SRT8 Enthusiast

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    I believe the VCA has done way too much damage and it will never be the same unfortunatly. It's just time to move on the VCA is dead and with everyone leaving the VCA will go bankrupt soon.
     
  6. luc

    luc Viper Owner

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    Bob; with all due respect, you are acting like a spin master. As you can see I also joined the club back in 2000 and therefore you should remember the episode of "Magic Wands" when every single post, even only slightly critical of the way the VCA/website was run, was removed. THAT WAS OVER 12 YEARS AGO. WHAT HAS CHANGED?. The issue is way deeper than a feud between 2 individuals. The problem, as I see it is that the club had been run, not for the benefit of the members/viper owners but rather for the benefit of a few "insiders". When such a situation arise, the "insiders", in order to protect their advantages (and those advantages run the gamut from financials, ego trip, power, etc), are willing to bend the rules, ( or create news rules to serve them better such as the by-laws) and silence anyone that question them. The repressive environment is not a new development as you would like us ( or members new to the club) to believe. IT STARTED OVER 12 YEARS AGO
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2013
  7. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    The feud has been going on for years. It is not new and I did not state that it was new. We can disagree on when the repression started but I think we agree on the fact that a repressive environment was created. A review of the Board posts by the new Board members shows that quite a bit has already changed. Unfortunately, most of those posts are only in the Members Section. Thus far they have done the following: Maurice was invited back to assume the post of National VP( I assume he declined.); it was announced that there will be a comprehensive Bylaw overhaul which includes allowing any Regional Officer or above,who has at least one year of experience in the position, to be nominated to run for any National officer position by at least ten members as a candidate in an election where ALL members can vote ( in other words, if some Regional officers will step up to the plate and run, the VCA could have a complete set of new leaders elected in a member wide voting election.); term limits will be enacted so entrenched power cannot happen again; a formal oversight procedure for VPA will be created; new moderation rules will be put in place, and, to some extent, already have in the past three days ( I understand that some who were banned or otherwise restricted have been restored to normal status; a public apology has been made to Ralph; and steps have been taken and/or are being taken to eliminate the conflict of interest that Chrysler was concerned about. The Board also mentioned that it intends to include provisions in the revised Bylaws that reduce the executive power of the VCA President so Godfather I type moves can never happen again. All of this has happened in about one week. With all of our help, the VCA can be restored to a fun, inclusive, tolerant club that fulfills the admirable goals set forth in its Bylaws including charitable works. I really do not think it is that hard to achieve if everybody helps. There are many talented, creative people in the Viper Nation. The new Board has invited their participation. It is up to them.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2013
  8. Rizzo

    Rizzo Viper Owner

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    Hi Bob. Your posts are always good and I admire how you stay level headed. I saw the email to Maurice inviting him to come back and as soon as I read it my first thought was wow.. What a kick in the balls. Basically it was a " Hey our lawyers told us we screwed up and will probably be sued for wrongful dismissal so please come back so we can fire you properly" LOL.. From the emails I am getting and from what the other sites are all saying the exodus has started. The "other site" will be up and running soon and the membership at VCA is going to tank. I really loved coming on here for years and in fact bought both of my Vipers from members on this site. But I don't think it can be saved. There is too much bad blood and a lot of really good members are gone and are taking the rest of their friends with them. I have not seen one positive email about the VCA yet and every member so far has agreed that its too late. I'm actually amazed that this thread is still up. Perhaps the mods are all out getting suited up for full body thermal life savers....haha.
     
  9. luc

    luc Viper Owner

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    Bob, changes, if any, did not came because some board members or officials suddenly "saw the light" and decided to run the club in a democratic way, at the service of the members. And the feud you are referring too has NOTHING to do with the dictatorial attitude of the national office. So basically what you are saying is that we should now trust a system/peoples that for years, not only asked us to bend over but, to also pay for the Vaseline ? To have any chance of surviving the VCA need a complete clean-up by a NEW cleaning crew.
     
  10. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    I would not put it quite the way you are saying it but I agree that new, fresh leadership would be a good thing because I believe that the top positions should turnover frequently to avoid any entrenchment of power. I think the people on the new Board agree with this in view of their announced course regarding the revision of the Bylaws. The revised Bylaws will allow that to occur assuming people use the new provisions to run for office. If you are saying that there are no good, trustworthy people at the Regional level to run, I strongly disagree. There are some very capable people in Regional Officer positions who would be excellent National leaders. Just look at what some of the Regions have accomplished over the last few years. Their accomplishments reflect that leadership.
     
  11. PDCjonny

    PDCjonny Enthusiast

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    Bob has changed his tune from ardently defending the status quo to singing a new conciliatory song.
    You've been exposed Bob, and everybody who has been paying attention knows it.
    Flip flopper changing with the breeze.
     
  12. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    It would be interesting to know what the 20 or so keyboard warriors who go to the various threads and basically attack the VCA and anyone who offers reasonable solutions to its problems have constructively done to achieve anything positive for the VCA and its 3000 or so members. The current Board is trying very hard to effect positive change. They have accomplished much in their first week. I respect their efforts and ask that all reasonable people join in to help them.
     
  13. Voice of Reason

    Voice of Reason Viper Owner

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    My prediction. The VCA limps along in the first quarter of 14 comprising one state, Florida, plus a smattering of other people spread across the US who renew and not know what's really happening. Dues will be used up within the first month providing a subsidy to VPA that cannot sustain itself, there will be no 2014 magazines, and there will never be a VCA raffle car again to make up the deficiencies. The writing is on the wall.

    Those of us active within our regions are loyal to the men and women in those regions, not the national chapter. So goes the region goes its members, plain and simple. It makes no difference to me if I'm a member of the VCA or VOA, what matters is sustaining the relationship I've made with the people in the IL region, creating a venue for me to meet other great owners outside of our IL group, and fostering a positive relationship with the great company who built my dream car. Everything else is icing on the cake. The VCA is no longer in a position to provide me with what I'm looking for. So sadly my first year of membership here will be my last. But my love for the Viper will live on and that's what matters.
     
  14. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    Luc. I checked a little history today. The feud has been going on for more than five years. Most members probably were not aware of it and did not care. But a number of passionate and ardent supporters of each of the principals of the feud were, and have been, attacking and sniping at each other for that entire time. Entrenched leadership and the feud do, to a large extent, in my opinuion, account for what happened. Another factor I did not mention was the Chrysler bankruptcy. When Chrysler abruptly ended the financial support for the VCA during the bankruptcy And JR Thompson terminated its agreement to provide all the operational support for the VCA, the club was at great risk of ceasing to exist because it was also soon announced that Viper production would end and it did prior to the final Gen IV event on July 1, 2010. The then leadership had to scramble to save the club. During that time, they garnered too much power. After things stabilized a bit, there was no reduction in that power and the Board was overly protective of what it had saved and its own power. This is not an unusal phenomenon. Look at what happened to the size and power of our government after each significant war. The VCA has the ability to transition back to a good place. The new Board is trying very hard to do this. Let's all help them.
     
  15. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    Respectfully, I do not agree. I think the VCA will survive and that there will be another raffle car. Except this Board will probably do it more in the spirit of the VCA being a nonprofit organization with one of its stated Bylaw goals being to give to charity. So it is my hope that a principal beneficiary of the proceeds of such a raffle will be a charity - like Wounded Warriors.
     
  16. wirepaladin08

    wirepaladin08 Enthusiast

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    I know next to nothing about the history of the controversy here. I've seen none of the nasty letters, etc. and probably won't go to the trouble of trying to form a judgment as to who has behaved properly or improperly in the urination contest that has transpired. In a situation like this, there is usually enough blame to go around.

    I've always been amazed how bent out of shape people can get in two facets of life -- country club and church politics. I guess now I'll have to add car club politics to the list.
     
  17. Free2go

    Free2go Viper Owner

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    Bob, I really appreciate the informative reply. You seem to be an intelligent voice of reason in the midst of all of this and probably developed a few enemies playing devils advocate a time or two. I think the VCA will survive BECAUSE it is a controlled atmosphere. There are times I enjoy being here. Sometimes I want to go to the zoo, sling poo, and act a foo...so I log on to Viper Alley. New members don't give a rats behind about BOD drama. They want to learn about their car, and chat and share. For me, depending on how I feel is where I go. I had a nice dinner of prime rib with my wife at the country club last night....this Sunday I'll be watching football and getting wasted with an old buddy that just got out of prison for running over a cop. VCA:country club. VA:strip club. Both are necessary and justify each others existence. Of course this is all my opinion.
     
  18. AZTVR

    AZTVR Enthusiast

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    LOL. I would have called it a tornado. I would not have characterized the AKADA (Anti Kool Aid Drinkers Association) supporters as just shooting the "breeze."
     
  19. STUGOTS

    STUGOTS Viper Owner

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    Facts? kinda hard to tell but it seems to me that Dan is trying to make a difference in a positive way
     
  20. Free2go

    Free2go Viper Owner

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    Yes. Level headed, humorous, informative. Seems like a good guy to me this Bob.
     
  21. BigsViper

    BigsViper Viper Owner

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    Wounded Warriors is an admirable organization, put I think the USO uses their donations more effectively and supports not only wounded vets, but vets returning from deployment without wounds and also active duty. I've been a big supporter of theirs for years.

    As far as this VCA drama, it's been brewing since 2000 when I joined and was really untenable when I quit in 2003 and went to the dark side. :D
     
  22. Hisserman

    Hisserman Viper Owner

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    Bob's little feud scenario glosses over a magnitude of larger and more serious issues with the VCA leadership, including: 1) non-existent financial disclosures, 2) manipulation and delays in distributing regional dues receipts, 3) illegal raffle operation, 4) questionable dealing with the IRS, and 5) numerous other financial activities that don't pass the "smell test". To characterize the problems with VCA as a clash of personalities between a couple of members is missing the forest for the trees.
     
  23. TowDawg

    TowDawg Viper Owner

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    Bingo!
    All we keep hearing is that things are getting fixed. That's great, but how about airing out the issues and what's having to be fixed? Plus, the quesitons regarding location, supervision, registration/legality of the raffle are all VERY easy questions to answer RIGHT NOW. So many people "in the know" bailing (including the legal counsel), does not look good. Share the info and quit protecting people. If you're all new and have nothing to do with the issues, then you should have nothing to worry about. If the people that caused the issues do have things to worry about, then screw 'em. You made your bed, now "lie" in it.
     
  24. CWhiteRun

    CWhiteRun Has Left the Room!

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    Bob never talks about the 70+ people that were banned and have not been let back in, especially Maurice and Randall. If those 70 or so people came back, they would destroy his arguments and make him look like a tool.................. for the VCA. All those banned/moderated should be let back in NOW, period! When is that suppose to happen? All we have heard for the last 2 weeks is "there is new management and thing will get better." WHEN?!!!! What BS!!!!!
     
  25. Bobpantax

    Bobpantax Enthusiast

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    Maurice was invited back to be the National Vice President. He declined. Dan has posted in other threads regarding banning and moderation. I suggest that you read his posts if you can. They may all be in the members section. What all of you who are so hostile and angry are ignoring or keep forgetting is that all of the National Officers who left, either by Lee terminating them or by resigning, to form the proposed VOC, until recently, were part of the same National Board that was in existence until Lee resigned. The same thing applies for anyone who was a National Board member through the date of the last VOI. A Board of Directors and each one of its members owes a fiduciary duty to the entity for which it, and each of them, is acting. So if there are any of the problems that have been so recklessly alleged, leaving the Board may act to exculpate a member for new acts going forward after they left but has no effect on past acts. Do you really think a three week separation with a bunch of rhetoric and accusations lets anyone off the hook for what has been, by your own words, going on for years? Think about it. The only tools on this Forum are those that buy into that absurdity. With the above said, I think it is time for those that left to put down the pitchforks and join in with Dan and the current Board to fix all the problems that they, in part, helped create. That's what is the stand up thing to do. And despite the reckless accusations flying about, I still think that all of the problems can be, and will be, remedied.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013
  26. TowDawg

    TowDawg Viper Owner

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    As far a Maurice being "invited" back, yes, he was technically told he could come back, but did you read the letter? It was more of a "we think we overstepped our bounds in getting rid of you, so to avoid being sued, you can come back" than a "we want you back" letter. I don't blame him for declining in the least bit. Why step into a mess that doesn't really seem to want you anyway? At least that's the way I read it. Maybe some other people should take note of his actions and think about their place in all of this.
     
  27. Nine Ball

    Nine Ball Enthusiast

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    I just spent all weekend surrounded by numerous fellow Viper owners, while at the ALMS race in TX. The SRT hospitality booth was impressive, it was a good time. The general consensus that I observed and discussed wasn't good for the VCA. I don't think I heard a single compliment about this club, the entire weekend. A far cry from the previous Viper gatherings, where members used to encourage others to join the VCA, and did their best to promote the VCA. Not this time around.
     
  28. STUGOTS

    STUGOTS Viper Owner

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    Lmfaooo yeah, don't want to be laughed out of the place the way things stand LOL
     
  29. TowDawg,

    Opinions vary but here are the facts:

    Below is the memo I wrote to Maurice my first day in office. He had been suspended for 1 day at that time. And to clear the record, I was advised by our attorney that the prior president screwed up the "suspension procedure" for Maurice only, so he may not have been legally suspended. When I learned of this, I decided on my own to let him know for two reasons:

    1 - I thought that recent actions could have some repercussions. I also thought he could help us move forward and hoped he would consider joining our group in trying to rebuild the club; and

    2 - If he was not planning to return to the VCA, as a courtesy to a friend, he should know that he could incur legal liability if he tried to recruit members from the VCA to a new venture as VCA officer. I've known Maurice for a long time and he was a great help to me when I took over as So Cal Region President. We did some joint events together and generally got along pretty well. I viewed this action as how one friend should treat another. Both of us tried to get a number of changes made during our time on the board together and neither of us could accomplish some of our goals. We were both a bit frustrated with the status quo. While we did not always agree on the small stuff, I think we always shared a common vision of doing what we thought was best for the members.


    __________________________________________________________________________

    Maurice,

    This may come as a surprise to you, but you know how “hard headed” I can be with the facts, just as I know how “hard headed” you can be with perception and tone. Either way, right is right and rule of law should prevail. As usual, the best solution is usually somewhere in the middle.

    I planned to bring this up at our meeting tonight and would bet that you will be re-instated in some way. Not sure exactly what position you’ll be re-instated for as Lee named a secretary. I surely won’t be the one to suspend you and will support your re-instatement and future involvement at whatever level we can work out. I hope you will accept.

    As an aside, I know how important your next year’s Nor Cal Club party is to you and I would hate to screw that up for you. That would be like making Jon B miss a VOI, which we did and some of us now regret. Remember when I proposed that you and I meet with Jon in SF to try and get him back into our group months ago? I (we) could never get Lee to go along.

    I would ask you to please sign a properly executed COI form (as I’ve asked in the past) and decide which position you wish to hold, either Regional President or ?

    In any case, I’ll let you know what our new team decides.

    You know me well enough to know that I’m not afraid of a fight. I do wish it could be avoided though. A prolonged battle causes casualties on both sides and would not be in the best interests of the membership and believe it or not, I have no desire to be President, never have. Perhaps we could work together to get this club back on the right track? Alex could be helpful too. I always enjoyed debating him and will miss that.

    Acting President for almost a day now.

    Regards,

    Dan
     
  30. CWhiteRun

    CWhiteRun Has Left the Room!

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    Are you kidding?! His was the "only" banning that was not legal?! What about right and wrong?! What Lee did to EVERYBODY caught up in this was WRONG! He banned the VP of the VCA?! REALLY?! Dan, this stinks to high-heaven. Lee should have never had the ability to ban anybody whether in the President's position or not. He banned and moderated more people after he left the position!

    You want to affect change, yet are saying and doing the same BS we have come to expect from the VCA over the last 10 years. More of Chris and Lee's manipulations thru you. Now in your last para, you are threatening legal action?! Good luck with that.......................:rolaugh::rolaugh::rolaugh:
     

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